Errol Spence vs Lamont Peterson is live this weekend from the Barclays Center, Brooklyn, for the IBF Welterweight title.
In the WWE, which is scripted sports entertainment, they have unknown/journeyman wrestlers who are thrown in the ring with the top guys for a beat down. As a result, that top guy looks even more invincible before a big match with even competition, ultimately. While boxing isn’t scripted, the majority of the time a similar path is unfortunately followed. A top fighter will have a tuneup fight, or a fight against a low ranked fighter, as we the fans await the fight we truly want to see.
Throughout his career, Lamont Peterson has been used as that “tuneup” option. He has proven that isn’t the case, and he doesn’t fall in the tuneup fighter category. This weekend he faces the new up and coming welterweight phenomenon, Errol Spence in his first title defense. And while this isn’t the fight we necessarily want to see, it’s guaranteed to not be a tuneup.
Errol Spence (22-0, 19 KO’s) is virtually on everyone’s top 10 pound for pound list. He’s the second ranked welterweight and the reigning IBF welterweight champ. He has been in search for the big commercial fight with possibles Keith Thurman, Danny Garcia, Shawn Porter, even Terence Crawford, who has moved up to welterweight now as well. When it was announced Spence would make his first title defense against Lamont Peterson, there was a bit of backlash from those wanting the blockbuster matchup.
However, let’s not forget truly who Lamont Peterson is. Peterson (35-3-1, 17 KO’s) was abandoned as a child, in and out of foster care and eventually taken in by Hunter (his trainer), as a pre-teen.
He’s worked himself up to being formerly the unified IBF and WBA champion at 140 pounds. He fought with the likes of Tim Bradley, Amir Khan, Danny Garcia, Kendall Holt and Felix Diaz. Only Lucas Matthysse has dominated Peterson, which was five years ago. He is what I call a game challenger with a constant threat of danger. Like Spence, Peterson’s a guy most look to avoid within the division.
Spence and Peterson sparred roughly 6 years ago against each other in what was described as an even session. When you break down the fighters in reality, Spence and Peterson both have similar skill sets. But Errol’s is at a higher, a younger and therefore a much fresher level. Spence is a little more dynamic, little more ambitious, has superior firepower in his fists. And he’s the bigger fighter physically. Peterson has been in many wars and I imagine his mindset coming into this weekend is with the approach for another one.
Ultimately, Peterson’s will to stay in the pocket, trading shots, will be his undoing. He’s a tough fighter, he’s a proud man both in life and in the ring, more importantly in boxing sense he is always willing to go out on his shield.
I believe that will be the case by the 8th-9th round. Spence’s body attack early will wear down Peterson. By the mid rounds I see Spence laying down the punishment.
Peterson has earned the right of a punchers chance, after all he controversially defeated Khan, and almost defeated Danny Garcia, both fights where he was the underdog. In all actuality it’s hard to not pull for a fighter with a story like Lamont Peterson’s, but the fighter he is facing is one on a mission to be boxing next top star, and willing to ‘suplex’ anyone in his path out of the way.
While we won’t see any suplexes this Saturday night, I am expecting to see a knockout. While this isn’t necessarily the fight we want to see, it will definitely be worth watching.
Errol Spence via 9th round TKO